Dick’s first introduction to historic properties began as Project Director, representing Operations while at Marriott corporate headquarters, of the Essex House and was later designated as the Manager. This sparked his initial interest in architectural preservation which has intensified over the years. He considers his association and experience at the Essex House as one of the highlights of his diversified career, which continues to serve him today. If he were to choose a most favorite design project it would be the preservation of a historical property, followed by restoration and renovation of homes designed by noteworthy iconic architects and condo/hotel conversions. While observing the conversion of 185 suites into condominiums, Dick was inspired to repeat the process on a smaller scale in Florida. This idea launched the founding of his company, International Condominium Consultants, Inc. and Continental Properties, Inc.
The JW Marriott Essex House, opened in 1931, commonly known as the Essex House, and is now a 44-story luxury hotel with 509 Art Deco style rooms, and 185 condominiums located at 160 Central Park South in Manhattan, across the street from the southern border of Central Park. The ornate gilded doors and rich wood paneling throughout the hotel harken its Art Deco history, while cutting-edge technology seamlessly blends past and present. The Essex House has received the distinction as being named a Historical Hotel of America, the official program for the National Trust for Historical Properties.
Construction began on October 30, 1929, a few days after the Wall Street Crash of 1929. However the Great Depression slowed construction and the hotel did not open until October 1, 1931, as the Essex House. It was built on part of the expansive site of José Francisco de Navarro's "Navarro Flats" that were built in the 1880's as an experiment in condominium apartments.
Other projects include a 1929 Colonial Revival home in Chevy Chase/Washington DC, a Two-Story Bungalow ala 1912 in Hyde Park-Tampa, a mid-century renovation (not a true restoration) in Palm Springs and a 1936 Spanish in Miami. References: Historical Society of Washington D.C., Tampa Bay History Center,